December 16, 2005

Great Piece on Iraq in Human Events Online

It's a Struggle for the Sunni Triangle by Amanda B. Carpenter A closer look at the recent pattern of hostilities in Iraq demonstrates some good news that hasn’t gotten much exposure in the liberal press. In light of the large turnout for yesterday’s elections in the Sunni regions of Iraq, this pattern may point to even more good news ahead... ..The good news hidden here is that if political participation in the new Iraq continues to be a positive indicator of the degree of anti-American violence in a region, anti-American violence could now go down in Iraq across the board considering the large reported turnout for last week’s election in Sunni Arab regions.... ..As the map and chart below illustrate, U.S. fatalities have been largely confined to Baghdad and to the heavily Sunni Arab provinces of Anbar, Salaheddin and Ninevah. ..In fact, of the 755 U.S. fatalities in Iraq over the last year, 679 were in Anbar, Baghdad, Salaheddin and Ninevah. Although there is no up-to-date census data for Iraq, CNN reported this year that Baghdad is 40% Sunni. Anbar is widely accepted to be the most predominantly Sunni Arab province. Ninevah and Salaheddin are deemed to have large Sunni Arab populations, mixed with Kurdish Sunnis. And Diyala, which is East of Baghdad, has a significant Sunni Arab population mixed with both Kurds and Shiites. ..In addition to being concentrated in just a few provinces, U.S. fatalities outside Baghdad have occurred most heavily in the Sunni Arab cities along the Euphrates River in Anbar province. This is where Fallujah and Ramadi are. A second heavy concentration is in the Sunni Arab cities along the Tigris River north of Baghdad. Tikrit, Saddam Hussein’s hometown, is along the Tigris in Salaheddin Province.

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